Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

Madisonville Native Ms Tennessee Heads to National Pageant

mstennNASHVILLE, Tenn. (7/2/14) — 2014 Ms Tennesee United States and Madisonville native Lauren Wallace will arrive in Washington, D.C. today for the Ms United States Pageant.

“I don't think I'll ever feel prepared. You always wonder, 'Did I do enough? Did I prepare enough?'” Wallace said. “I'm trying to have as much confidence as I can.”

Still, Wallace is optimistic.

“I think once I get there tomorrow, everything will be fine. I'm sure I'll make lots of new friends. It'll be a great experience for me,” she said in a Monday evening interview.

According to Wallace, pageants are much more difficult than most people would assume.

“It's so much more than just putting on a gown or a swimsuit and walking on stage. I've prepared so hard for this. It's emotional, mental,” Wallace said. “You have to educate yourself with current events. The interview process is stressful.  It's hard work. It's like working two jobs.”

Wallace's first job is as a nurse in the pediatric cardiac intensive care unit at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital.

“It's a tough job to have, with sick, sick, sick kids.,” Wallace said.

The two jobs did collide when Wallace had the opportunity to volunteer at the hospital as Ms Tennessee.

“They have a Queen for a Day program, and we're there as queens and the kids can dress up as princesses. It was so much fun to interact with them not as a nurse,” Wallace said.

Though she enjoys the work she does as Ms Tennessee, Wallace remains grounded.

“I've never been a pageant girl,” Wallace said. “I've been an athlete and never really had any interest in it until my mid-20s, until a family friend encouraged me. She said I had the look for it. I got to a point in my life where I was feeling stagnant, and I wanted to try something new.”

Since becoming Ms Tennessee in April, Wallace has given her time to charity and volunteer work.

“We have a platform that we promote. My platform is raising awareness for human trafficking,” Wallace said.

It was a mission trip to El Salvador that first brought her in contact with victims of human trafficking, Wallace stated, but her cause is closer to home.

“It's not just in other countries. It's right here under our noses,” Wallace said. “In Nashville, I became involved with End Slavery Tennessee. I'm trying to get donations. We put together survivor kits. The first day they get off the street, they have nothing. The kits have hygiene items, food, all the things they need that first day and first night.”

One of Tennessee's most prevalent human trafficking areas is on the route from Nashville to Madisonville.

“Clarksville has one of the highest rates in Tennessee because of the Army base,” Wallace said. “You don't want to think about our soldiers being involved in this. You don't want to think that it's our teenagers and runaways being sucked up into this life. It's hard to get out of once you're in it. It takes a lot of work.”

According to Wallace, the support she has received from her hometown has been great. She grew up in Madisonville and graduated from Madisonville North Hopkins High School.

“Madisonville has been my biggest support through this. It's amazing to see how many people from my childhood give donations and write the Facebook comments and support me. It's just so wonderful to have those people behind me. Nashville's a bigger city, obviously. I have support here. But the people from my childhood, the people I grew up with, are my biggest support,” Wallace said. “It's been great to reconnect with people. It's great to be from a town that continues to care for their children no matter where they go on to in life.”

Those who want to support her should consider voting for her in the contest for the most photogenic contestant, Wallace stated.

“I have my own Facebook fanpage: facebook.com/mstenneseeus. They can go there, click on the picture, and it should take them right there, and they can click 'vote,” Wallace said.

The public can also vote through the pageant's official website, www.missunitedstates.com. Voting will end July 5.

Ami Clayton
SurfKY News Reporter

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

In Other News...

Bearcats Return to Owensboro for Homecoming Week at Brescia University

OWENSBORO, Ky. (9/18/14) — Homecoming week kicked off on Monday, Sept. 15 on campus at Brescia University with a host… Read More

Owensboro's Nathan Morris Has Worldwide Appeal While Embracing Home

OWENSBORO, Ky. (9/18/14) — Nathan Morris discovered his love of music when he was just 8 years old. Read More

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

September 15, 2014 5348

Man Accused of Stealing Rural King…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 15, 2014 5064

Man Accused of Stalking Woman During Her…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 16, 2014 3997

Postal Worker Arrested for Terroristic…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 17, 2014 2863

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
September 17, 2014 2829

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

September 17, 2014 2863

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
September 15, 2014 2384

Man Arrested for DUI, Carrying Concealed…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 15, 2014 2259

Man Arrested for Being Under Influence of…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 17, 2014 1881

Three Injured in Two-Vehicle Accident

in Top Stories by Kyle Pharris
September 18, 2014 1488

Manitou Man Charged with DUI

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

September 15, 2014 1584

Owensboro Convention Center Announces…

in News by Madison Strobel
September 15, 2014 1280

Marian Retreat Oct. 18-19

in News by Jennifer Kaminski
September 15, 2014 1160

Parking Committee Meeting Location Change

in News by Beth Cecil
September 15, 2014 502

Owensboro Man Charged With Burglary,…

in Top Stories by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
September 15, 2014 403

Owensboro Police Department Activity…

in Top Stories by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

September 15, 2014 5348

Man Accused of Stealing Rural King…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 15, 2014 5064

Man Accused of Stalking Woman During Her…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 16, 2014 3997

Postal Worker Arrested for Terroristic…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 17, 2014 2829

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper
September 14, 2014 2359

Three Injured in Single-Car Collision

in Top Stories by Robert LIttlepage

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 03social 04social 22social 21social 06